Transylvania County Library logo
B.C. Lankford

The Oak
Grove Cemetery on the Asheville Highway across from Blue Ridge Community
College is the burial place of two men who played a major role in the formation
of the Town of Brevard.

Transylvania County was established in 1861 a supplemental act stated that the
county seat would be named Brevard and located within five miles of W.P. Poor’s
store.  Commissioners were to “purchase,
or receive by donation, a tract of land of not less than fifty acres” between
May 10 and June 10, 1861.  On June 8,
1861 L.S. Gash, B.C. Lankford, and Alexander England sold 50 acres for this
purpose to the Chairman of the Court of Pleas and Quarters of Transylvania
County for $1.00.  

Braxton Caldwell
Lankford was 37 years old in 1861.  He
was a successful businessman and farmer. 
His home and Valley Store, located across the road from Oak Grove
Methodist Church and cemetery, was the site of the first meeting of the court
for the newly formed county on May 20, 1861. 

Lankford family graves at Oak Grove Cemetery

would go on to hold various county offices, serve as Brevard’s postmaster from
1881-89 and mayor in 1892-93.  He was a
Master of the Dunn’s Rock Masonic Lodge. 
B.C. Lankford died on August 24, 1895 and is buried beside his first and
second wives, who were sisters, at Oak Grove Cemetery.

The England family plot is at the door step

of the former Oak Grove Methodist Church.

England was 39 years old in 1861.   Although he lived on the same plot of land his
entire life, England was born in Buncombe County, spent his early adulthood in
Henderson County and was instrumental in establishing Transylvania County.  He served as mayor of Brevard in 1893-94.  England died March 6, 1896 and is buried at
Oak Grove Cemetery. 

cemetery, which is owned and maintained by St. Timothy United Methodist Church,
covers less than 4 acres.  It includes
the former Oak Grove Methodist Church and has approximately 1000 graves.  The oldest marked tombstone is Amanda Thomas
Lankford, 14-month-old daughter of Braxton and Amanda Lankford.  She died on May 9, 1861.  Her mother died three years later and is
buried beside her.

Family names
in the cemetery include Aiken, Allison, England, English, Fortune, Lankford,
Lyon, McMinn, Meece, Morris, Neely, Norton, Pickelsimer, Reece, Rogers,
Siniard, Tinsley, and many more.  The
privately owned “annex” on the southwest corner has about 49 gravesites.

and information for this column are provided by the Rowell Bosse North Carolina
Room, Transylvania County Library.  Visit
the NC Room during regular library hours (Monday-Friday) to learn more about
our history and see additional photographs. 
For more information, comments or suggestions contact Marcy at
[email protected] or 828-884-1820.

search our catalog

search our events

search our website

search our catalog

search our events

search our website

(828) 884-3151

212 S Gaston St, Brevard, NC 28712